Should there be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns?

In recent years, the question of whether presidential candidates should release their tax returns has become a hot-button issue. In 2016, Donald Trump broke precedent and did not release his past tax returns, claiming that he did not want to do so while under audit. He has since continued to claim that given the size of his business ventures, IRS audits are still underway. As candidates in the Democratic Party have begun to announce their plan to run for president in 2020, some (though not all) of them have released their tax returns, claiming financial transparency in contrast to the president. In the meantime, 18 states have introduced legislation to require presidential candidates to release their tax returns to get on the state ballot.

Those in favor of requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns argue that it is an issue of transparency. This side believes that the American people should know the financial dealings of the candidates.

Those who oppose requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns argue that it is unnecessary as there are already numerous other financial disclosure forms that candidates are required to fill out. They argue that creating a law to require the release of tax returns will become a weapon used by politicians to attack their opponents. This could set a dangerous precedent that will undermine the rule of law. What do you think? Should there be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns?

Current Standings:
Yes: 31%
No: 69%
  • Katie from New York

    This debate is a subject of financial transparency within the US, which has been tattered with by our current president. As the potential highest official of our country, those campaigning should be forced to release their tax returns. The people should be able to know what kind of person they are voting for. Although we can all agree that no one is perfect, especially some of our past presidents, who like the rest of us, are human, elected officials are supposed to represent us, the people, and our country. They represent us to the whole world, and it is only fair that we be able to vote for someone who has clear intentions and does not mind telling the American people what these intentions are. This includes releasing tax returns. How candidates have handled their financial affairs and personal investments are significantly important for voters when choosing a commander-in-chief, or any elected official. Tax returns contain information on sources of income, how much money has been earned, and any strategies used to reduce tax bills. President Trump has positioned himself as the first president in 40 years to refuse to release his tax returns in office.

    In the early 1970s, while under audit and tangles in controversy over his personal taxes, President Richard Nixon released tax returns dating back to when he took office in 1969. This scandal led to one of Nixon’s most famous quotes, “People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook, Well, I am not a crook.”, Nixon had told reporters in 1973. The 1973 allegations against Nixon mirror those that have been compared with President Trump, grossly underpaying what he owed the government. Nixon, inadvertently began a tradition of presidents releasing details of their taxes that every executive has since followed until President Trump. Presidents and presidential candidates should have to tell the American people what they are doing with their money, and should have no problem doing so if they have nothing to keep from anyone.

    Being honest and lawful are some of the best qualities a commander-in-chief can have, including with their money. With today’s highly skeptical public, who often mistrusts the Government, tax returns should not be something they have to be concerned about. Many candidates might use those tax returns against each other, as shown in the 2016 election, but some have already various ways to put down their opponents. The president or any candidate should be transparent about their tax returns. The American public may be skeptical but there is one thing they may appreciate in their candidates, and that is candor.

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    This debate is a subject of financial transparency within the US, which has been tattered with by our current president. As the potential highest offi…

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  • Autumn from New York

    In light of running for public office you are already volunteering to do away with any semblance of privacy. So there should be no issue with being forthcoming in making your tax return public.
    Taxes are a major part of our nation’s economy and if a candidate has either lied or dodged paying them then they have done a great injustice to the very government they are preaching that they would like to lead.
    I see that many argue that tax returns may be used as a weapon among candidates but isn’t it also a useful weapon if the candidate does not release it? Just my opinion, but either way it will be used against a candidate so you might as well be truthful to begin with. Then again we are talking about politics which is no stranger to corruption.
    Many citizens have a slanted viewpoint of politicians and maybe the public will gain more respect for a candidate who bears all and lets the public formulate their own opinions.
    So in retrospect there should be a federal law requiring for candidate’s to release their tax returns. It will serve as a checks and balances system in the race for candidacy. We formed our government to be sure that there were always checks and balances and that no one person could control all. Requiring the release of tax returns is just another way for citizens to formulate an educated opinion and vote for the future President of America.

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    In light of running for public office you are already volunteering to do away with any semblance of privacy. So there should be no issue with being fo…

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  • Hamid from California

    No nation can trust a President, a main influence on the Justice Department, who is unwilling to reveal his or her past financial history, reluctant in showing past monetary actions/decisions. There should be a federal law requiring a candidate for President to release his or her tax returns. Currently, President Trump has defiantly broken the trend of nominees releasing their tax returns, and now in office, is profoundly rejecting calls for basic information to be released. This is a matter of fundamental financial and lawful transparency with the American people that has been broken by the current Commander in Chief. It is an absolute necessity for a bill to be passed guaranteeing that candidates for President release their tax information, appropriate per private and public matters, in order to set a fair process for democratic participation.

    Since the presidency of Richard Nixon, presidential candidates have willfully released their tax returns and past financial history, in a private setting, while displaying to the public, the necessary and lawful information that shows past tax decisions and actions. Tax returns and other documents can help reveal a nominee’s yearly income, how much paid in taxes and the tax rate, what deductions and tax credits claimed, real estate taxes and abatements, investments, how much the candidate gave to charity (significant in identifying candidate’s priorities and ideals), to whom the candidate owes money/needs to refund, and if money is being held offshore. Some of this information should be displayed in a private setting, in a closed hearing, while others should be revealed to the American people, in order to allow for another factor in determining democracy’s outcome.

    According to Senator Brad Hoylman of the New York State Senate, “‘The taxes wouldn’t be made public, and it’s a request for the personal and corporate taxes in response to an official request by three committees, the House Ways and Means, Senate Finance Committee and the Joint Committee on Taxation’” (“New York state Democrats introduce bill to force release of Trump’s tax returns”) The law, if implemented, would not indirectly force the public viewing of private tax information, but would allow a comprehensive review among legal professionals and members of numerous Congress committees. This issue, although it has been rejuvenated by President Trump, is not a personal attack on the President. It is imperative that Americans are able to see an extent of legal information, that many find necessary to determine a president’s integrity in running for office. Furthermore, the release of tax returns has been consistently deemed “constitutional.” As stated by Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and solicitor general Noah Purcell, “‘The disclosure requirement…is likely Constitutional’” (Washington state passes bill mandating political candidates release tax returns in order to appear on ballot”). The President is one of the most important, even in the executive branch, influencing members of legislation in the United States, through the nomination of federal judges and the power of veto. In addition, of course, the President is declared the “the executive [in] the organ exercising authority in and holding responsibility for the governance of a state. The executive executes and enforces law.” Without the release of tax returns and key tax-related information, citizens are unable to form a fair and trustful opinion on the executive authority of the nation. No individual can be named the responsibility for “governance of the state” without clearly and profoundly conveying to the American people his/her trust and past lawful actions, and the release of taxes is a major part of that.

    In contrast, many argue that the release of tax returns would contribute to a political weapon used by opposing politicians, and is an invasive act defying the individual and private liberty of a citizen. The President, even though a public servant, is a citizen, that deserves to have his/her rights represented. According to a White House spokesman, “‘The public has no right to see those…Congress definitely doesn’t have a right to see the tax returns of a private citizen. But also just think about the precedent that sets’” (“White House spokesman says public and Congress have ‘no right to see’ Trump’s tax returns”). This point resonates in the fact that tax returns are of a private matter, and can contain classified information that may not be safe and lawful to reveal to the public. However, even though this main point of confidentiality should be honored, the American people deserve to hear and see an unbiased review of tax returns. A federal law to release tax returns, would NOT necessarily mean a federal law to PUBLICALLY release these tax returns. This clause in the law would require candidates for President to hand over the necessary tax returns requested by Congress (ie. past five years), to be reviewed solely by Congress. After this initial review, the publicly accepted information of the tax returns can be released to the public, with a comprehensive summary provided by the Congressional Committees who reviewed the private information. This would allow for a confidential, but fair review process of the candidate’s ideals and lawfulness in the past in regards to tax matters.

    The passing of a clear and direct piece of legislation requiring candidates for President to release their tax returns would be a positive step in assuring long-needed transparency with the American people. In the dawn of numerous executive controversies such as the Mueller Report and supposed further collusion with Russia, it is necessary for the assurance of accountability in the executive branch to prevail. Clauses to the law would include: private review of confidential information, public disclosure of basic tax information, summary requirements from congressional committees, and direct consequences to unlawful candidates. Although not a perfect solution, the passing of such law would continue to promote principles our founding fathers strived to apply in every sentiment: equality and fairness in every facet of government.

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    No nation can trust a President, a main influence on the Justice Department, who is unwilling to reveal his or her past financial history, reluctant i…

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  • Crazy Frog from New York

    A president may be the most powerful singular man in the country, even with checks and balances factored in. That is why I believe that a president, as well as all other high ranking public officials, must release their public information to deter corrupt individuals from running in office, and encourage less corrupt individuals to run despite their income (it is no secret that the richest people have the best chance of winning the election in this current political system).

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    A president may be the most powerful singular man in the country, even with checks and balances factored in. That is why I believe that a president, a…

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  • Erin from Colorado

    I personally believe that any person running to rule over/for people should be completely transparent with their lives. Yes, they deserve privacy, typically in family lives, but their tax returns would only put forward to the public their trustworthiness.

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    I personally believe that any person running to rule over/for people should be completely transparent with their lives. Yes, they deserve privacy, typ…

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  • Hayden-Grace from New York

    I believe that presidential candidates should be required to release their tax returns as a form of transparency with their supporters. A candidate is already willing to give up part of their privacy when the make the decision to run. Releasing tax returns can allow voters to see the kind of person they are voting for and how they want to represent them. The ways in which a candidate has handled their finances and investments can allow a form of transparency for voters and give them insight into how their candidates have used their money and what their sources of income are. President Trump has been the first President in the past 40 years to not release his tax returns although he promised to before he was elected. Many people may see this situation as a form of trust and as President Trump will now not release his taxes, the relationship of trust can begin to deteriorate. Being honest is a main quality that is important when elected a candidate that represents the country as a whole. Releasing tax returns can become a standard of trust and honesty in the relationship between the candidate and the voter.

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    I believe that presidential candidates should be required to release their tax returns as a form of transparency with their supporters. A candidate is…

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  • Samuel from Kentucky

    I believe that it should be law just solely to encourage an ideology of transparency. This should just be an act of goodwill but sadly with the political climate we have now, I can see where the others can make their argument. I am only barely on the yes side as personally at this point in my life, I am unaware of many of the intricacies that make up the financials of our great country. That being said, I am not well versed in this field. I say yes only on the fact that seeing your leader in their full is reassuring and shows the strong character of a leader. If they have nothing to hide from the public’s eye, then what is there to be suspicious of?

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    I believe that it should be law just solely to encourage an ideology of transparency. This should just be an act of goodwill but sadly with the politi…

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  • Jeremy from Pennsylvania

    Being transparent is one of the best qualities a leader can have, so being transparent about money is no different. Even though talking about one’s tax returns is a hot button topic for most people, the president should let people know about what they got back to keep that honest image. The public already has a negative view of the Goverment keeping secrets from them, either it be spying on them with their technology or keeping secret discussions under wraps, tax returns should not be one of those things people should worry about. In the case that candidates shall use those tax returns against each other is possible, but candidates have already used numerous other means to spoil their opponents names, Tax returns would just be one of many of those tools. The president should be transparent about his/her tax returns, at the end of the day, people appreciate honesty.

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    Being transparent is one of the best qualities a leader can have, so being transparent about money is no different. Even though talking about one’s …

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  • Brian from Texas

    A president of the Unite States should reveal their tax returns. Cuurently we already cannot trust our very own Donald Trump, even if he unveils a bad record, it is a step closer to balancing our nation in terms of trust.

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    A president of the Unite States should reveal their tax returns. Cuurently we already cannot trust our very own Donald Trump, even if he unveils a bad…

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  • Jonathon from Virginia

    If an individual wants to run for this nation’s highest office, we must make it a point that they provide proof that they are in fact complying with our country’s tax codes and not criminally avoiding paying taxes. The precedent has been set that candidates are to release their tax returns, but Trump has been avid that he will not release his and that any investigation into his finances are to keep away from the “red line” at his tax returns. This says to me, amongst many others, that he is hiding something in his financials. It is not secret that Trump has been involved in numerous tax schemes, along with accepting large sums of money from outside sources (reportedly even foreign governments). The federal government must make it a point that in order to be eligible for a candidacy for any public office, you must release your tax statements so that the American people and the government know that you are in fact the person you claim to be.

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    If an individual wants to run for this nation’s highest office, we must make it a point that they provide proof that they are in fact complying with o…

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  • Mary from California

    In my opinion, I believe a president should provide their tax information if the public wishes to see it because ultimately we would like to believe he/she is not keeping information from us.

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    In my opinion, I believe a president should provide their tax information if the public wishes to see it because ultimately we would like to believe h…

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  • Joseph from Virginia

    Yes I believe they should. To show how much trust they have in the American population to trust them. Especially when it comes to them supporting one of the main ways America gets its money. From small loans to huge transactions seeing those tax forms make Americans feel a sense of pride knowing their president is a kind, hardworking, and honest American.

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    Yes I believe they should. To show how much trust they have in the American population to trust them. Especially when it comes to them supporting one …

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  • Sienna from Ohio

    The President should not have any financial self interest in foreign governments, corporations, or businesses. The president should not have any self interest making profit while holding the public office. The President should be make policy decisions in the interest of the American people and not personal financial gain. A good way for American voters to preview this is to have presidential candidates disclose tax returns this gives great insight into what I have mentioned. Let Americans decide whether or not you have self interest and financial gain risks tied to future policy making ability. Americans want transparency and even a better American characteristic like honesty, is that too much to ask for?

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    The President should not have any financial self interest in foreign governments, corporations, or businesses. The president should not have any self …

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  • Tressa from Kansas

    It’s his business not the Congress’s or anyone else for that matter

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  • Benjamin from Illinois

    Federal employees at the level of President, Vice President, members of the Senate and members of the House of Representatives should all be required to release their tax forms. Presidents of the United States receive $400,000 a year for the rest of their lives for their service to our country. This places them in the top 1% of wage earners in the United States. A typical Representative or Senator makes approximately $174,000 a year, placing them in the top 4%. Some receive more than this figure, earning over $200,000 a year, placing them in the top 3%.
    Instead of complaining that the current president refuses to release his tax returns, the entirety of Congress should vote to require all of them to release their tax returns every year. If the entirety of Congress is willing to release their tax returns, it is justified for them to require the President to release his personal tax returns. However, until they are willing to explain why they are in the top 5% of wage earners based solely upon their salary from the taxpayers in the United States of America, I find it rather childish to complain about that particular matter.

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    Federal employees at the level of President, Vice President, members of the Senate and members of the House of Representatives should all be required …

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  • Alyanna from Florida

    He is a public figure and the people deserve to know his tax returns. The people need to know exactly who they voted for and with his career as a businessman, there may be sketchy activity going on that we need to be aware of. People may say that everyone deserves there privacy even though they have nothing to hide. If you have nothing to hide, then show us. The right to privacy is not about principles and rights, it was created by people who wanted to hide their dirty secrets. There should be a federal law forcing Trump to release his tax return statements because he is not above the law and if there’s nothing sketchy happening, then there shouldn’t be anything to hide. Right?

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    He is a public figure and the people deserve to know his tax returns. The people need to know exactly who they voted for and with his career as a busi…

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  • Elizabeth from Florida

    If the American people are to elect a president who will in turn be in charge of our country’s financies, the president must release their tax returns. How will citizens be able to assess the ability of the president to handle an entire country’s economic problems if they are unsure the president themself can handle their own money? Releasing tax returns is a way for the American people to feel secure and have faith in their president and government that the U.S. is in good hands. Without these papers, people will begin to lose faith in the president and the government. A government cannot stand without the faith and trust of its citizens.

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    If the American people are to elect a president who will in turn be in charge of our country’s financies, the president must release their tax retur…

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  • Hayden from Virginia

    Yes. If they cannot be transparent with the public then why run. Especially if they could fix the Flint water crisis 56 times over.

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  • Justin from Washington

    It is true that a candidate’s tax returns could be used to bludgeon and smear a candidate, but the fact that this is a possibility of requiring candidates to release their tax returns betrays the widespread belief that only those who are financially secure and responsible do not have incriminating information in their tax returns. Requiring candidates to release their tax returns sets up another characteristic of the candidate for public evaluation: The candidate’s financial security and responsibility. Considering that the most important issue to the American public by far has been the economy, this characteristic is essential in a President of the United States because a President with financial security and responsibility allows the public to feel secure in the belief that the President will manage the economy efficiently. A clean tax return file ensures the public that the candidate, if elected, will do an effective job of managing and growing the economy. An incriminating tax return file shows the public that the candidate will not be the best choice for economic growth and should not be elected. Therefore, there should be a federal law requiring a presidential candidate to release his or her tax returns as it allows the public to better assess which presidential candidate, if elected, will best address the most pressing issue in American society, the economy.

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    It is true that a candidate’s tax returns could be used to bludgeon and smear a candidate, but the fact that this is a possibility of requiring candid…

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  • Emmalee from North Dakota

    I think every politician should release their tax forms so the people know that they’re spending in accordance to the views they hold. If you vote for someone because they’re charitable, you would want to know that they give money to worthy causes. Politicians should be as transparent as possible, especially in this political climate.

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    I think every politician should release their tax forms so the people know that they’re spending in accordance to the views they hold. If you vote for…

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  • Jack from North Dakota

    Yes I do believe that the President should release their tax returns….. Along with all members of the House of Representative and the Senate. I know a few people in Congress that could use a investigation because they have way more suspicious activity going on than our President does. cough cough…. Cortez, Palosi, Schumer. The list goes on.

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    Yes I do believe that the President should release their tax returns….. Along with all members of the House of Representative and the Senate. I know…

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  • Mason from New York

    I mean should we make everyone’s finances avaible? Should I be able to see all of my neighbor’s sources of income? Should the John/Jane Doe seeking to make fraud of my name be able to see my income, etc.? Why is what anyone makes important? So that one can call “broke boy” on a lower income state worker? I’m kidding of course; poor people don’t make it into office. Politics is dirty, it always has been. Making congressional workers show their dollars. This would make racketeering very popular. Maybe the IRS, (a government office) could confirm for the public that the SS number of the person in question, matches that to a person who has filed their taxes SS number. I mean my opinion means nill, and my solution subterrainian. But there is no pleasing everyone. Until those people see Trump’s tax returns, they will call bull on what he says. Same as flat earthers, until they see from space that the Earth is round, they won’t stop.
    Why do you think that mattress store that you see no one enter stays in business? It’s a front. Probably owned by: 1). The Mob. 2). Someone in politics.
    In final, making officials “expose” their finances won’t do anything.

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    I mean should we make everyone’s finances avaible? Should I be able to see all of my neighbor’s sources of income? Should the John/Jane Doe seeking to…

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    • Chris from California

      I agree with your statement on the flat earthers and the matress firm, on the contrary, I don believe that hiding their earnings will not change anything, indeed it will. This will help others see who they choose to vote for, see how ¨close¨ they are to their community and how much they care for them. In my opinion, I would not appreciate voting for someone who claims to care about my financial well being, to only hog up their income for their luxury expenses.

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      I agree with your statement on the flat earthers and the matress firm, on the contrary, I don believe that hiding their earnings will not change anyth…

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  • sofia from New York

    The idea of this question is centered around one topic; trustworthiness. Are they trustworthy, can they be trusted if they were to be put in office? Tax returns can be a huge clue into this important information that the public would like to know because lots of candidates lie about their returns. However, should candidates be mandated to release their personal information that they may want to keep private when there are plenty of other ways to reassure trustworthiness?
    The answer is no. Yes, the public wants to find out if the candidate is trusting, but there are so many other ways to figure out this information other than forcing a candidate to exploit their personal information. Since a young age, adults have refused to tell me their annual income. As I grew older and more mature, I have come to realize that this kind of personal information is personal for a reason. So, how are tax returns any different? The public has no right to force personal information out of any candidate no matter the situation when there are other ways of obtaining reassurance of trust.
    An alternative way to find out if a candidate is trustworthy is to interview their past employers or family and friends. This solution is both informational and doesn’t exploit one’s personal information. Plus, you can learn much more about the person other than if they are truatworthy or not. It is a logical win-win situation that gets the voter what they want and keeps information private. Nothing can be better than that. So, next time your thinking of creating a law that exploits one’s information, don’t. It is wrong to force tax returns out of people who don’t want to share.

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    The idea of this question is centered around one topic; trustworthiness. Are they trustworthy, can they be trusted if they were to be put in office? T…

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  • Brady from Illinois

    There should not be a law requiring a Presidential candidate to release his or her tax returns. The 4th Amendment states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, PAPERS, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” Private information is private information. A candidate should not be judged on how they handle their money, but how they will handle the country. If the State of Washington wants to pass a bill demanding the release of tax returns on candidates, they can do that. Less than 2.3% of US citizens live in Washington. But unless Congress becomes overrun with those who care more about tax returns than legislation, a bill like that will not and should not pass. Privacy should stay private, candidates should run with a clean conscience, and voters should vote for the candidate that will do the most good.

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    There should not be a law requiring a Presidential candidate to release his or her tax returns. The 4th Amendment states, “The right of the people to …

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  • Brady from Illinois

    There should not be a law requiring Presidential candidates to release their tax returns. The 4th Amendment states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, PAPERS, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” A person has a right to the privacy of their papers (which in this case would be their tax returns). Additionally, voters should not support a candidate simply based on their financial history. Voters need to focus on the future and not the past. Should the voters show the candidates their tax returns to see whom the candidate wants supporting them? It does not make sense. Voters should focus on the issues that face the country, not how a candidate filed their taxes.

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    There should not be a law requiring Presidential candidates to release their tax returns. The 4th Amendment states, “The right of the people to be sec…

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  • Susan from New York

    The President was elected for the people. He should be held accountable only for actions that affect the country or occurrences during the term of his presidency. His personal affairs are not for the public eye, especially since they have nothing to do with his duties in office. Furthermore, if a candidate for president is required to reveal his or her tax returns, what stops federal law from disclosing tax returns of other politicians or even regular citizens? Every citizen has the right to privacy, regardless of whether he or she is running for a significant office position or just going about their day.

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    The President was elected for the people. He should be held accountable only for actions that affect the country or occurrences during the term of his…

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  • Sofia from California

    I don’t think that there should be a law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns. This law would interfere with their privacy and their tax returns don’t show what type of president they will be. When looking at presidential candidates, their tax returns isn’t something that people should be looking for, rather how that person as president can benefit the United States.

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    I don’t think that there should be a law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns. This law would interfere with their priva…

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  • Christian from California

    Despite the fact that I may personally agree with a law requiring presidential candidates to release his or her tax returns, I agree that it is not in the best interest of the country and ultimately violates the Constitution of the United States. First, the Fourth Amendment argues this, “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation…”. What this proves is that despite the pressure given by other candidates, the media, and the American public, candidates have the right to do with their tax returns what they please. The only possible exception to this case I would advocate for would be if the IRS audited the candidate, and found signs of fraud or other crimes. In this case, it may be possible to release the tax returns of the candidate. I completely understand that the releasing of tax returns has been a tradition that has gone back forty years. I also understand that Americans want to know who their candidates are and how they run their own life, knowing that this man or woman may become leader of the free world. However, presidential candidates deserve the same privacy as any other citizen of this nation. For example, although it is almost certain that President Trump will not win California, a bill the state has proposed wants to restrict his name for the ballot because he chose to adhere to the rights in the Constitution. A bill like this should never be passed into law, because its passing would set a precedent for nullifying the Bill of Rights, and create irreparable damage to the laws this country was built on.

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    Despite the fact that I may personally agree with a law requiring presidential candidates to release his or her tax returns, I agree that it is not in…

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  • Ryan from California

    There should not be a law requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns to be eligible to run for office. Those documents have nothing to do with how they will run the country, nor do they in any part correlate to any requirement of a presidential candidate’s eligibility. Furthermore, where is the line drawn, a presidential candidate is no different then any regular American. Should every citizen’s tax returns be available for all to see? This could lead to even more problems and potential fraud cases which could ruin someone’s life. Presidential Candidates should not be required to release their tax returns as it will only lead to more debate and will have no positive impact on our country.

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    There should not be a law requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns to be eligible to run for office. Those documents have nothi…

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  • Chase from California

    There is no reason for the public and those in the White House to require that presidents release their tax returns. When does the public knowledge of the president’s lifestyle stop if they can’t even trust themselves with their own taxes? It is not so much that the Democrats are requiring Trump to release his tax returns, it just sets up a bad future of an invasion of privacy. Where do we draw the line on how much we can bash and slander the president to where it becomes utterly disrespectful? There are some things that should remain private and tax returns are most certainly one of those. There should be no federal law requiring the president to do anything that does not remain in line with his listed duties under the Constitution. As an article from The Hill says ‘“The public has no right to see those,” Gidley said on Fox News. “Congress definitely doesn’t have a right to see the tax returns of a private citizen. But also just think about the precedent that sets.”‘ His last sentence is crucial because what would come out of this? Where do we draw the line on the right to privacy of all citizens, yes, even including the president? We must ensure that freedom and liberty persist in America before we accuse our own president and those around us.

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    There is no reason for the public and those in the White House to require that presidents release their tax returns. When does the public knowledge o…

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  • Holly from New York

    I do not believe that a federal law should be created in order to require candidates to release their tax returns. Finding trust within a candidate should not rely solely on tax returns. There should be other ways for a candidate to show their vigor and passion for running for something without having to prove their worth with how much they pay. I understand that having proof that a person paid the correct amount in taxes does show that they are an honest, but it does not mean that they are an overall honest person. I do not believe that one’s tax returns have a correlation with one’s ability to run a country. If they lied on their tax returns but never released them, I think that these untrustful actions would carry into office and will manifest them in other ways.

    I was not aware that paying taxes mattered so much in this country that people might be prohibited from leading the country unless they let everyone see their returns. In today’s society, it is very taboo to ask another adult what they make yearly, and you would not go up to your boss and request to see how much money they had to pay in taxes.

    Yes, this is an invasion or privacy, but more than that I believe it just is not necessary. I would not be opposed to voting for someone just because I do not know how much he paid in taxes 5 years prior. We should focus on their opinions, efficacy, actual qualifications and ability to perform the desired job if elected, instead about something unimportant in their personal life. Public officials undergo tremendous amounts of scrutiny as it is, and I also do not entirely agree that the amount of probing that they go through is necessary. They of course need to be checked to some degree so that we are not electing criminals or people of malicious intent. However, I do not think that taxes are the most important issue in this topic. This could just be due to my age and being entirely knowledgeable in the world of taxes, but in my personal opinion, knowing the information of another person’s tax returns just aren’t important.

    Overall, I feel like what and how people pay the government should not be a judgement of their character. There should be other ways we can find out their intentions and qualifications for their intended positions, whether that be for President of the United States or State Governor.

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    I do not believe that a federal law should be created in order to require candidates to release their tax returns. Finding trust within a candidate sh…

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  • Lauren from California

    There should not be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns. By law, everyone in America has a right to privacy. According to the Fourth Amendment, “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” If a candidate running for president must release his or her tax returns, then that is violating their right to privacy. Just because someone is running for president doesn’t mean that this right can be violated. If a law is created that requires the candidate to release his or her tax returns, then it also puts our privacy rights in danger, because if the candidate’s rights are violated, then sooner or later ours may be too.

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    There should not be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns. By law, everyone in America has a right to pr…

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  • Haley from Ohio

    I do not think that the president should share tax returns with us because we need to focus on other things regarding the elections. Their text returns should not be a top priority in the elections.

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    I do not think that the president should share tax returns with us because we need to focus on other things regarding the elections. Their text retur…

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  • Hannah from Kentucky

    Every individual has a right to privacy. In Roe vs Wade and Griswold vs CT, the individual’s right to privacy overrode the government. Furthermore, the 9th Amendment protects the rights of citizens not specifically expressed in the Constitution: one of these rights being privacy. The candidates have a right to privacy just as much as any individual. If there is a federal law requiring candidates to release their tax return information, then more laws could follow that infringe on other people’s rights to privacy as well. This law would set a precedent that could be unconstitutional.

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    Every individual has a right to privacy. In Roe vs Wade and Griswold vs CT, the individual’s right to privacy overrode the government. Furthermore, th…

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  • ashley from Kentucky

    No, there should not be a required law that allows for the general public to know the information of a presidential candidates tax returns. It is not our right to know that sort of information about a candidate and it can be dealt with through the government on it’s own hands. The people should not prioritize this type of knowledge about them over other information.

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    No, there should not be a required law that allows for the general public to know the information of a presidential candidates tax returns. It is not …

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  • C from Alabama

    The democrats are desperately trying to rid of trump in any way they can.

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    • sofia from New York

      youre my hero

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  • Logan from Kentucky

    I do not think he should have to release his tax returns because it is a free country. One should not be forced to release his tax returns to the public. If they are the president they obviously are being observed by everyone in the country so if they did have false tax returns then the people to whom it would concern would notice it and act upon it.

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    I do not think he should have to release his tax returns because it is a free country. One should not be forced to release his tax returns to the publ…

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  • Reese from Kentucky

    I believe that there should not be a law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns because it is not needed information that the American citizens should focus on. They should be focusing on the candidate and not how much money they make. It also violates the candidates right to privacy.

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    I believe that there should not be a law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns because it is not needed information th…

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  • sam from Indiana

    In my personal opinion, I don’t think there should be a law requiring the president or presidential nominees to release their tax returns. If the IRS thinks there is a reason for investigation, then they can handle it like any other U.S. citizen. If they don’t, then I do not think there should be any reason for the american people to be concerned. I don’t think we should act as the judges and treat others personal information like a reality tv show. It should be handled in an ordinary manner like all other tax affairs

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    In my personal opinion, I don’t think there should be a law requiring the president or presidential nominees to release their tax returns. If the IRS …

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  • Madison from Kentucky

    I do not think that the President should be required to release their tax returns as it is an issue of privacy. Although having transparency within the government is something that is very much desirable, releasing the personal information about the President’s financial state is not headed in the right direction. Every citizen in the United States has a right to privacy, including the President. In this case, President Trump did not release his tax returns to the public upon his election into the white house. He has every right to keep his personal dealings to himself. This also is another avenue in which people could use against him in the media or in upcoming re-elections. Furthermore, think about the effects after the Presidency. This could reveal too much information and leave him susceptible to attack by someone trying to acquire the money or something of that nature.

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    I do not think that the President should be required to release their tax returns as it is an issue of privacy. Although having transparency within th…

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  • Megan from Kentucky

    No, because I don’t know. I don’t know anything about tax returns.

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  • Lauren from Kentucky

    No, I don’t think that there should be a federal law requiring a candidate for presidency to release his or her tax returns. I believe that taxes and tax returns are sort of your own private information and unless it is because you have to turn in your taxes, I think you should be able to do with them what you wish. Every future has a past and just because a candidate may not have had a good job or previous background, doesn’t mean they are going to be a bad leader for our nation. One small job and small amount of money doesn’t mean anything to a big job like being the President.

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    No, I don’t think that there should be a federal law requiring a candidate for presidency to release his or her tax returns. I believe that taxes an…

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  • Maguire from Kentucky

    This will only spark negativity within America as every president’s private spending information will be released to everyone. It is not our jobs as citizens to critique what the president’s spending habits are. As long as he/she is paying their fair share of taxes, what is the problem that needs to be upheld? Don’t fix something that isn’t broken.

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    This will only spark negativity within America as every president’s private spending information will be released to everyone. It is not our jobs as c…

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  • Brent from Kentucky

    To release your tax returns as a running candidate for the Presidceny is more so a tradition than a law. Releasing your tax returns is just the same as releasing your private information to the public eye. Every American citizen is entitled to their right to privacy by the fourth amendment, and it is the same for the President of the United States. There should be an option for the Presidential candidate, or current President to release their tax returns, but there should be no such law that enforces the individual to release their private information. Any law of the sort would be considered unconstitutional, as it would violate the very amendment that gives every citizen their right to privacy.

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    To release your tax returns as a running candidate for the Presidceny is more so a tradition than a law. Releasing your tax returns is just the same a…

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  • Zoe from Kentucky

    There should not be any law or legislation that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns because it is an unnecessary violation of privacy. Normal citizens are not required to release their tax returns to Congress and to the general public so how are candidates any different? Candidates are already required to file financial disclosure forms when running for office and these are released to the public and prove that they are in good standing. People who support the release of tax returns want to limit the candidates’ freedom of privacy in order to gain political leverage which directly contradicts our Constitution. The Fourth Amendment clearly states “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated [ . . . ]” If we require candidates to release their tax returns, we are going back on one of the fundamental rights that our founding fathers wrote for our country.

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    There should not be any law or legislation that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns because it is an unnecessary violation o…

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  • Jonathan from Kentucky

    I believe that presidential candidates should not have to release there tax returns mainly because it is an invasion of privacy, which goes against the 4th amendment. There are numerous occasions where candidates have to spend money on private matters. Also, with other poeple knowing you and through the transparency, people can figure out ways to beat you at your own game. This offers others the ability to find advantages in many ways. I don’t think that presidential candidates should have to release their tax forms.

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    I believe that presidential candidates should not have to release there tax returns mainly because it is an invasion of privacy, which goes against th…

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  • Ryan from Kentucky

    No, there should not be a federal law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax return information. Even though this would bring a stronger level of trust towards the candidate, it is nobody’s business to know other people’s tax information. Politicians are regular people just like celebrities and athletes, they are citizens of the United States just like us. If you very much desire to find financial information about candidates, it is not hard to search for their net worth and/or yearly salary. If there is no law requiring us as citizens to release our tax returns, there should not be one for presidential candidates. After all, we all want equality right?

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    No, there should not be a federal law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax return information. Even though this would bring a st…

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  • Noah from Kentucky

    I do not believe that the president should have to release his tax return because I feel like there are plenty of other ways for people to find out a person’s financial situation. Good chance is that if someone is president, they are more on the wealthy side. I just think it should remain an option if the president decides to do so.

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    I do not believe that the president should have to release his tax return because I feel like there are plenty of other ways for people to find out a …

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  • Elijah from Kentucky

    While I do think that when the Presidential candidates it makes it pretty clear to see what the candidate spends their money on, I think that it invades the candidates rights of privacy. I believe that all people should be able to spend their money that they made themselves however they choose to do so. If everyone in the nation is able to track what the candidate purchases and how much income they are making, it really pressures the candidates to hold back on those purchases and luxuries that they would love to have. I think this is extremely unfair since they have made the money and should be able to spend it on whatever they would like.

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    While I do think that when the Presidential candidates it makes it pretty clear to see what the candidate spends their money on, I think that it invad…

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  • Robyn from Kentucky

    Candidates should not be required to release their tax returns, because it is an unnecessary search into their personal life and would only be used to against them. If voters are concerned about the candidate’s financial dealings and past, they should look at other forms that the candidate has already filled out. Moreover, this law would not give complete transparency into the candidate’s entire life and would only provide information about their finances.

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    Candidates should not be required to release their tax returns, because it is an unnecessary search into their personal life and would only be used to…

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  • william david from Kentucky

    I believe that the president should be able to make the choice whether or not to submit his tax returns. If you believe that you should have to show them than dont vote for anyone who refuses to show them.

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    I believe that the president should be able to make the choice whether or not to submit his tax returns. If you believe that you should have to show t…

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  • Madelyn from Kentucky

    I do not think there should be a law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns because it goes against our right to privacy. While this would make them a more trustworthy candidate because the public can see what they spend their money on, it should not be a law because it would be considered unconstitutional. There are also more important issues than tax returns that should determine one’s ability to run the country.

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    I do not think there should be a law that requires presidential candidates to release their tax returns because it goes against our right to privacy. …

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  • Ysabel from Kentucky

    I believe that there shouldn’t be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns because it’s a violation of privacy to see how much money a person makes and a candidate shouldn’t be judged based off of the amount of money they make but the potential that they possess as a candidate for president. Additionally, it’s unnecessary for such classified information to be released.

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    I believe that there shouldn’t be a federal law requiring a candidate for president to release his or her tax returns because it’s a violation of priv…

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  • Audrey from Kentucky

    Every citizen has the right to privacy and I believe that even candidates/presidents should not have to release all their private information. Today through social media, information is posted constantly about candidates that already limit their privacy. So in general, candidates should not have to release their tax reforms.

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    Every citizen has the right to privacy and I believe that even candidates/presidents should not have to release all their private information. Today …

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  • Masen from Virginia

    Presidential candidates should not be required to release his/her tax returns. It would certainly be nice, and transparency with your constituents is always a good idea, but it is ultimately their choice so let it affect them and their number of votes. Many who are angry at Trump for not releasing his would not have voted for him anyways so not much would have been different had he released his tax returns.

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    Presidential candidates should not be required to release his/her tax returns. It would certainly be nice, and transparency with your constituents is…

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  • Morgan from Virginia

    No, I do not think there should be a federal law requiring candidates for President to release their tax returns. Although this law would probably make the candidate more trustworthy because it would allow for citizens to see what they’re doing with their money, tax returns are personal and should be kept personal by everyone. Presidents are regular people just like us, which means they should have the right to their privacy. Also, tax returns have nothing to do with how a President could and will run the country. Yes, it could be a strong indicator over how and why Presidents will use their money, but tax returns hold all information, even the very old things. With that being said, it is unfair to use a tax return as a way to help decide who to vote for President. There is no reason for a President to have their tax returns released if they are going to run the country just as well as if they did not release it.

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    No, I do not think there should be a federal law requiring candidates for President to release their tax returns. Although this law would probably mak…

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  • Madeline from Texas

    The practice of releasing tax returns is more of a minor tradition rather than an obligation. In President Trump’s situation he has chosen to break tradition by not releasing his tax returns. Instead of focusing on President Trump’s policy and performance, we are instead focusing on an issue that does not effectively prove financial responsibility. We have many public officials who have engaged in illegal financial dealings while in office. For example, former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has misused funds from her campaign finances as well as from the Clinton Foundation. The tax returns Hillary Clinton released during the 2016 election failed to detect any corrupt financial dealings. President Nixon also released his tax returns. Nevertheless, he was convicted in the Watergate financial scandal during his administration. In these cases, financial transparency was not the goal of these two politicians. Tax return reports failed to pinpoint any of these financial dealings. President Trump has not neglected financial responsibility by failing to release his tax returns. He has already filled out numerous financial transparency forms. In addition, financial responsibility, while a vital issue, is not the only determiner for a responsible politician. The American people have the duty to examine a candidate’s policies and past careers. We should be considering President Trump’s policies and past decisions when we cast our ballots during this upcoming election. Ultimately, enacting a federal law about tax returns would not prove financial transparency. It is not the ultimate determiner to prove the responsibility and character of a presidential candidate.

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    The practice of releasing tax returns is more of a minor tradition rather than an obligation. In President Trump’s situation he has chosen to break t…

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  • Loren from New York

    I do not think that there should be a law requiring politicians, presidential candidates, or the presidents themselves to release their tax returns. It’s seriously not our business. It doesn’t affect my directly, and it hardly affects me indirectly. It is Trump’s decision and to be honest, it’s not helping him get votes for the next election and he knows that and that’s ultimately his choice. If he doesn’t get votes because he didn’t release his tax returns, you people should be happy, I mean, you wouldn’t vote for him if he released his tax returns anyways. There’s a lot more to it than that, but I stop there.

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    I do not think that there should be a law requiring politicians, presidential candidates, or the presidents themselves to release their tax returns. I…

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  • Caleb from Oklahoma

    I think no because of invasion of personal property/ privacy.

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  • Morgan from Texas

    America prides herself on her checks and balances system, a system intentionally designed to keep the president from maintaining too much power. And the system has done this faithfully for many a year, doing its best to make the president a man of great standing, while maintaining that he stays just that; a man. And should any man or women in America be forced to provide their tax returns? I don’t believe they should, as doing so in my opinion breaks the right to privacy that walks hand in hand with America’s ideals of freedom. Aside from a breach of privacy, asking someone to hand over their tax returns to a public only intent on using them for his degradation (regardless of their content) is like asking a man to shoot himself in the foot. We as Americans cannot expect a total breach of privacy from someone the minute they step into office, but rather the president should be able to trust that those who elected him are standing behind him, ready to walk along side him to forge a better future for our country.

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    America prides herself on her checks and balances system, a system intentionally designed to keep the president from maintaining too much power. And t…

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  • Kelly from Florida

    I obviously think that Trump should release his tax returns, but I don’t think it should be a law. Presidents are still people, and they shouldn’t be forced to release any personal information that they aren’t comfortable with. That said, I think that it’s very suspicious that he’s not releasing his tax returns, especially since people have asked for them- this makes him look suspicious- and could impact his approval ratings.

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    I obviously think that Trump should release his tax returns, but I don’t think it should be a law. Presidents are still people, and they shouldn’t…

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  • Kyle from New York

    I do not believe that there should be a law, at the federal or state level, requiring Presidents or candidates to release their tax returns., unless they are under suspicion of financial wrongdoing. This is private, personal information of the President or candidate, and therefore should not be regulated. I believe that taxes are not the most important thing about the person, there are other things that the people should be worrying about.
    I also do not believe that any member of Congress should be requiring another person [the President] to release their returns, unless said member of Congress releases their own tax returns. Lead by example. After all, no one branch of government is the true “leader” of our nation, they all share the power equally, or at least that’s the way the Constitution is written.

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    I do not believe that there should be a law, at the federal or state level, requiring Presidents or candidates to release their tax returns., unless t…

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  • Tommy from Maryland

    No he should not. I say this because I think making a president release his or her tax returns is an insult on many different levels. For example, one level is that it makes the IRS look incompetent as an organization, making it sound as if they are incompetent in finding frauds and money launders. Also, on another level it makes the president show how much he makes in a year. Although there are already rough estimates out there of this, I don’t think it is the right thing to ask someone how much they make, because it will make someone look bad either way. This is clear because if he makes more than he says, than people will be suspicious on what other sources of income he has or what type of labor he is using, and if he makes less than he says than he is just going to get drilled by the press. In my view I believe he should release them, but I think it would be unconstitutional and flat out rude to make him release how much money he is making.

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    No he should not. I say this because I think making a president release his or her tax returns is an insult on many different levels. For example, one…

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  • Audrey from Texas

    No, the President shouldn’t have to show his/her tax returns, here’s why. Right now he is serving as the United States President and is serving our great nation. Just because something is a tradition (which presidential candidates releasing their tax returns is), doesn’t make it mandatory or right. If anything Nancy Pelosi should consider the fact that she has a net worth of 26.4 million on a government salary, how is that possible? Where is she getting all that money? Where did the money from The Clintons’ Campaign come from? These are the people that need to be investigated. Not President Trump who is a billionaire and doesn’t take a dime as President.

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    No, the President shouldn’t have to show his/her tax returns, here’s why. Right now he is serving as the United States President and is serving our gr…

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  • Cameron from Pennsylvania

    The media needs to stay out of Trump’s life. He is doing a great job as president brings jobs to America and putting America first. KEEP AMERICA GREAT TRUMP!

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  • Daniel from North Dakota

    i disagree that we should make candidates reveal tax reports what good is that going to do.

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  • Hunter from North Dakota

    I believe this bill would be extremely unnecessary because, there is already numerous amounts of financial paper work a president or candidate has to fill out, and a president ability to run the country shouldn’t be based on there final status.

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    I believe this bill would be extremely unnecessary because, there is already numerous amounts of financial paper work a president or candidate has to …

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  • Sarah from North Dakota

    I think that there shouldn’t be a federal law requiring a candidate running for president to release their tax returns. I think that this should be applied to everyone in government. There has been other members of Congress who have committed actions that seem suspicious, not just the presidential candidates. I think that this should be revised to where all candidates and members must release their tax returns, not just presidential candidates

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    I think that there shouldn’t be a federal law requiring a candidate running for president to release their tax returns. I think that this should be ap…

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  • carlton from North Dakota

    No, this is not public information. Would you want your tax returns public? It is the same thing.
    Why just the president? If the president has to, why not the senators and representatives? its a two way street

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    No, this is not public information. Would you want your tax returns public? It is the same thing.
    Why just the president? If the president has to,…

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